Standing at Standing Rock

Penn's home page features a video article, "The Stand at Standing Rock", in which Tim Powell, senior lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies, reflects on the significance of the stand at Standing Rock.

Timothy Powell is a senior lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies, consulting scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and director of the new initiative at Penn called Educational Partnerships with Indigenous Communities (EPIC), housed at the Penn Language Center. Powell’s research has included digital repatriation projects in partnership with the Tuscarora Nation in New York, the Eastern Band of Cherokees in North Carolina, and Ojibwe bands in the United States and Canada.

“What the people at Standing Rock have taught us,” Powell says, “is that it’s a time for Native and non-Native people to come together, but not to assimilate Native people, but to honor them for their knowledge.”

Beginning in April 2016, members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and representatives from hundreds of tribal nations gathered to resist the completion of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which would pass less than a mile from the Standing Rock Reservation. Many members of the tribe consider the pipeline and its intended crossing of the Missouri River and Lake Oahe to constitute a threat to the community’s clean water and to ancient burial grounds. The grassroots movement known by the hashtag #NODAPL is considered the single largest gathering of Native Americans in more than 100 years.

For Tim Powell's reflections and for more information, see "The Stand at Standing Rock" on Penn's home page.